A three-year-old girl is fighting for life after being raped in India as the country marks the sixth anniversary of a student’s horrific gang-rape on a moving bus.
The child was found unconscious with bite and scratch marks on her body outside her home in Sahyog Vihar, in New Delhi’s Bindapur district.
Police say her neighbour, a 40-year-old security guard, has been arrested over the rape. The suspect is said to have been attacked by locals before he was detained.
It comes on the sixth anniversary of the brutal gang rape of a woman on a New Delhi bus in 2012. That attack sparked nation-wide protests and prompted calls for stiffer penalties for rape.
India has a grim record of sexual violence, with nearly 40,000 rape cases reported countrywide in 2016.
Campaigners say the true figure is likely to be much higher given the social stigma around victims of sexual crimes.
The latest incident, involving a little girl in New Delhi, ‘let down’ the bus rape victim, according to Delhi Women’s Commissioner Swati Maliwal.
The child was allegedly lured with sweets before her attacker picked her up from outside her house.
Her parents, daily wage labourers, were away at the time. Local news reports say their daughter was subjected to a ‘brutal’ attack.
The accused was said to have been attacked by furious locals and had to be treated for his injuries before being arrested.
Police have registered a case for rape under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POSCO) Act.
On average, more than a hundred cases of women being raped were reported every day in India in 2016, according to the national crime records bureau. Around six of those were girls below the age of 12.